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Project Management & Change

Increasingly more project-oriented approach in today's business climate. In books Human Factors in Project Management is defined by projects and project management: "A project is a unique venture with a beginning and an end, conducted by people to meet established goals within parameters of cost, schedule, and quality. Project management is the mixture of people, systems, and techniques required to carry the project to successful completion." Change projects encompass all of the characteristics of projects as defined above. The main distinction is that change projects impact the lives of individuals in a significant way.

Example illustrated in the case of a re-engineering projects, the job functions & interactions for each member of the department -- and sometimes even outside departments -- will change. Implementation of a mission critical computer system will also have a significant impact on the job functionality of individuals using the new system. In many cases all aspects of the person's job will change. Not only will procedures be different but also accessibility to important data, revised perceptions of service levels, and many other intangible factors will change. A shift in strategy from a centralized to a decentralized environment (or vice-versa) brings up a number of significant questions in the minds of employees.

These are change projects. These concerns affect an individual's future, their comfort level about their livelihood, as well as feelings regarding their self-worth. The 'change' project manager needs additional skills to compliment the science of project management to deal with the implications of change projects.